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Contemporary design response to surrounding farmhouses results in an expressive new building ensemble

Contemporary design response to surrounding farmhouses results in an expressive new building ensemble

1 Mar 2021 News

In the village of Frastanz – Gampelün, Austria, a new three-storey residential ‘tower’ and patio with carport are situated in a way that creates a new ensemble with two beautiful existing farmhouses that adjoin. Designed by firm Architekten, the new building’s distinct simplicity contrasts against its richly ornamented neighbours.

Adolf Bereuter

Ecological and economic sustainability were key design themes for the clients. The main structure is built entirely of timber harvested from the client’s private property. The façade likewise is clad with untreated timber from the site. The same timber lines the interior surfaces, where it is soaped three times for a uniquely soft finish.

Adolf Bereuter

Walls and ceiling are made of 24 cm thick, solid spruce wood, as is the façade. Fir was used for windows, furnishings and an acoustic ceiling while beech is selected for the floors and stairs and Elm is used for the outdoor seating area of the patio. Complimenting the wood are white clay plastered ceilings and a black steel shelf in the staircase.

Adolf Bereuter

The upper timber frame floors rest on three wooden columns that in turn rest on a massive concrete base. This structural solution allows for open spaces and overwhelming panoramic views from the ground level kitchen, living and dining areas. In contrast to the open nature of the ground floor, the upper floors feature carefully inserted windows that target views.

Adolf Bereuter

In addition to wood from the site, all other building materials and technology were specified from within a maximum radius of 50 kilometres.

Adolf Bereuter

Finally, the reinforced concrete structure of the patio and carport acts as a physical link to the existing buildings. The organically shaped roof is not only an expressive link but also forms a transition from indoors to the expansive garden beyond.

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